B5 Horror on the Hill
B5 Horror on the Hill Capsule Review by James Landry on 14/04/01
Style: 3 (Average)
Substance: 3 (Average)
Pretty average adventure with a few interesting elements.
Product: B5 Horror on the Hill
Author: Douglas Niles
Line: Basic D&D
Page count: 32
Year published: 1983
Capsule Review by James Landry on 14/04/01
Genre tags: Fantasy
This is one in a series of reviews covering most of the Basic D&D sets and modules. I was digging through my old D&D materials before selling them, and decided to write reviews of them for people to know what is worthwhile and what should be avoided.
These reviews will contain spoilers, so avoid at your own risk. Of course, since these modules have been out for 17 years or so, maybe it is a little late for spoiler warnings.
B5 Horror on the Hill
This module was written by Douglas Niles and appeared in 1983. The adventure begins in Guido's Fort (unfortunate name there). Across a mile-wide river lies a large bulk called "The Hill" which is rumored to hold monsters and ancient treasures. The PCs go to explore this area.
The adventure consists of three parts. The first part is the outdoor sections of the hill, holding a variety of creatures, from ogres to neanderthals, and a pair of nice old "ladies". There is some interaction between the creatures, so it isn't all hack and slash. The use of terrain is interesting because of the steam vents in the area from magma below.
The second part is a ruined monastery, run by hobgoblins and ogres. The goblinoids are assembling an army to raid across the river. After defeating the hobgoblin king, the party almost surely falls through a trap door into the lower levels of the dungeon.
This third part of the dungeon is probably the weakest. The characters are trapped in the lowest two levels of the dungeon and must battle their way through a young red dragon to escape to the surface. It's hard to tell how the monsters survive on this level, especially with ghouls and a gelatinous cube janitor. Of course, the way to the dragon is barred by kobolds who make use of the geologic fault line that runs through the middle of the dungeon.
Strangely enough, provision is made at the end of the adventure if the PCs have a subdued dragon tagging along with them.
This adventure is decent. There are enough new elements like the steam vents, kindly "ladies", and one-way ticket to the lowest levels to make the adventure somewhat memorable. On the other hand, there isn't much chance for interaction or role-playing once the characters get into the monastery, so it degenerates into a desperate hack and slash as the characters struggle to escape.